JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — We see the athletes biting down on their medals. We see the medals draped around their necks.
But what happens when these athletes leave the Olympic venue?
Swimmer Elizabeth Beisel tells a funny story about her experience at the Olympics in London. She won a silver medal and a bronze.
According to Forbes, a gold medal in the 2012 London games, considering the market price of gold then, was approximately $708.
Not pocket change. Could be tempting to crooks.
But besides the monetary value, Beisel wasn't about to take a chance someone would swipe her coveted medals.
To set the scene, Beisel says in the athlete's village, "Housekeepers come in and clean your room and make your bed. It's wonderful."
She isn't suggesting the housekeepers have sticky fingers, but who knows who else might come in?
So she kept her medals out of sight, she says, "hiding them in socks and underthings."
But then one day she comes back to her room and the medals weren't in her underwear drawer any longer.
Turns out the housekeepers were trying to be nice. "They had displayed them on the bed and gave us stuff animals," Beisel says. "I had a cute little pig."
At first there was a bit of panic, but she saw in a second the open display of medals on their beds. "Nothing was gone. That's good," Beisel says.
Beisel, with her usual pep and positive spirit, says the housekeepers thought they were doing the right thing. Over the years, it's become a funny memory.
Now Beisel lives in Rhode Island. She has her medals in a handcrafted wooden display case.
Beisel trained at the University of Florida. This year in Tokyo she'll be a commentator with NBC for the swimming events.